Christian author Jen Hatmaker received the opportunity to lead a group of fellow left-wing progressive faith leaders in prayer Thursday at the National Prayer Service, an event held every four years the day after the presidential inauguration to honor and pray for the president and the country.
And now Hatmaker is
mea culpa-ing all over social media for daring to thank God for giving America the land we have — and she's throwing event organizers under the bus for her troubles.
What did Hatmaker say?
When it came time for her to lead a prayer during the event, which was held virtually for the first time due to the coronavirus concerns, Hatmaker began by saying, "Almighty God, you have given us this good land as our heritage. Make us always remember your generosity and constantly do your will. Bless our land with honest industry and an honorable way of life."
January 21, 2021: Inaugural Prayer Service at Washington National Cathedral (OFFICIAL VERSION)
And it was that opening sentence thanking God for America's land that led to Hatmaker's apology.
She took to Facebook Thursday, shortly after the event, to reveal just how sorry she was for the line that made her "stomach hurt all day."
And she really,
really wanted people to know that she did not write the line she uttered as part of her prayer. (She also apparently did not read the line beforehand.)
It was those event "organizers" who gave her the naughty words.
"I was proud to offer the final liturgical prayer which was written by the organizers to serve as an anchor," Hatmaker pointed out.
"I have one regret and thus apology. The very first sentence thanked God for giving us this land as our heritage," Hatmaker said.
"He didn't," she continued. "He didn't give us this land. We took this land by force and trauma. It wasn't an innocent divine transaction in which God bestowed an empty continent to colonizers. This is a shiny version of our actual history. If God gave this land to anyone, it was to the Native community who always lived here.
"That line. I knew it as soon as I said it," she added. "And I panicked and froze and then just kept going. I am so sorry, community. Primarily sorry to my Native friends. It MATTERS to me that we reckon with our history of white supremacy and the lies we surrounded it with, and I am filled with regret that I offered yet another hazy, exceptional rendition of the origin story of colonization. Ugh."
How would she have opened the prayer had she been the one to write it?
In the most predictable way possible: "God, may we continue to be a people who reckon with our violent history, repent from the unjust systems we built, denounce white supremacy in all its forms past and present, and continue to work together to form a more perfect union."
(H/T: The Christian Post)